This page has information about how we take care of our plants, as well as some tips for you.
OUR GROWING PRACTICES
Our growing practices have been refined over the years.
Most of our young trees have been grown in our open-ground nursery using natural methods, where there is no use of chemical pesticides or artificial fertilisers.
Our chosen varieties of fruit & nut plants are selected for their history of producing well and maintaining high health. The names used for some varieties often simply refer to the area where the scion material was collected.
These older survivor trees are recommended by their owners as disease resistant, and have shown good health in our South Taranaki nursery.
Everything on site is grown under a natural regime, with the weeds being pulled out the old fashioned way, then used in our own composts.
Potted plants (in PBs or planter bags) have slow release chemical fertiliser pellets in their mix.
The potting mix is made here to our own recipe which is otherwise fully organic.
Some plants are bought in from other nurseries and we do not have details of their growing practices.
If you prefer only organically grown plants, please indicate this on your order.
Note: OG* (open ground grown - bare rooted) plants are available from July to mid August only.
Limited numbers are available as potted trees outside their dormant season.
CARING FOR YOUR PLANTS ONCE THEY ARRIVE
Plants in Planter Bags (PBs)
Give container plants a good soak on arrival and before planting.
If the pots are light, a simple method to ensure good saturation of the roots, is to submerge the pot in water until the air bubbles stop rising, and leave for about 10mins, allowing the soil particles to swell and the air spaces to be taken up by water. In a dry season, this is also a good way to prepare the plants for planting while additionally putting water in the hole before placing the plant.
Bare rooted plants need to be planted as soon as possible after arrival.
They can be stored in the packaging for a couple of days only, in a shaded cool area.
Alternatively they can be "heeled in" for a longer period until the permanent site is prepared, that is: unpacked, separated out and planted in loose damp soil or sawdust which is then pressed down firmly with boots, to press out all the air and firm the soil around the roots.
The soil must be kept damp to avoid the roots drying out.
NB: It is important to break open the delivery bundle and separate out the plants before heeling in to ensure that no roots are sitting in an air pocket drying out unnoticed.
PRINCIPLES OF SHELTER
There are four main principles to be aware of:
- Porosity - shelter should slow the wind, not stop it altogether. Very dense belts such as bamboo dump the wind on the lee side.
- Height - the height of your shelter should be as tall as the site allows. However, keep it shorter when to the north of buildings or other obstructions, to avoid too much shading.
On farms, prune your tall shelter trees to allow light to pass below the crown of the tree.
Deciduous trees provide excellent shelter and shade in late spring, summer, and autumn, but very little shading in the winter.
- Continuity - make shelter belts as continuous as possible (gateway wide gaps at the widest) to avoid wind accelerating through the gaps and around the ends of the rows.
For formal trimmed hedges 0.3 - 1.0m high, plant 4 - 6 plants per metre.
For formal trimmed hedges 1.0 - 2.5m high, plant 3 plants per metre.
Fof farm or horticultural shelters, plant 1 plant per metre.
For single row timber belts, plant 1 plant per 2-3 metres.
For double row timber belts, plant 2.0 x 2.0 or 2.5 x 2.5m.